Synthesis, Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Binding, and in Vitro and in Vivo Pharmacological Properties of 2′-Fluoro-(substituted thiophenyl)deschloroepibatidine Analogues

Pauline W. Ondachi, Ana H. Castro, Benjamin Sherman, Charles W Luetje, M. Imad Damaj, S. Wayne Mascarella, Hernán A. Navarro, F. I. Carroll

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The synthesis, nAChR in vitro and in vivo pharmacological properties of 2′-fluoro-3′-(substituted thiophenyl)deschloroepibatidine analogues (5a-f, 6a-d, and 7a-c) are presented herein. All had subnanomolar affinity at α4β2*-nAChRs. Contrary to lead structure epibatidine, a potent nAChR agonist, all were potent α4β2- and α3β4-AChR antagonists in an in vitro functional assay. In vivo, the compounds were also nAChR antagonists with various degrees of agonist activity. Compounds 5e, 5f, 6a, 6c, 6d, and 7c had no agonist effects in the tail-flick, hot-plate, hypothermia, or spontaneous activity tests, whereas 5a-d, 7a and 7b did not have agonist activity in the tail-flick and hot-plate tests but, like varenicline, were agonists in the hypothermia and spontaneous activity tests. Compound 6b had agonist activity in all four in vivo tests. All the compounds were antagonists of nicotine-induced antinociception in the tail-flick test, and all except 5c, 5d, 5f, and 6b were antagonists of nicotine-induced antinociception in the hot-plate test. Compound 7c, which had a Ki = 0.86 nM in the binding assay similar potency at α4β2/α3β4 with selectivity relative to α7 nAChRs, had an AD50 value of 0.001 μg/kg in the tail-flick test with no agonist activity in the in vitro or in vivo test had one of the more interesting profiles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)115-127
Number of pages13
JournalACS Chemical Neuroscience
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 18 2017



  • in vitro/in vivo studies
  • nAChR antagonist
  • nicotine receptors
  • α4β2- and α3β4-nAChR

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Biochemistry
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology

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